"The Oxford English Dictionary, as a historical dictionary, aims to give the earliest example of a word in English, and then show its subsequent development through illustrative quotations and uses many quotations from Dickens in doing so. In fact to date there are 9,218 Dickens quotations in the OED, making him the 13th most quoted source (just marginally ahead of William Caxton). Take our interactive quiz to see if you can tell which words have their first quotation from a work by Charles Dickens, and which make you cry What the dickens?"
I got 7 out of 9 right, but mostly through sheer guesswork!
Can you tell Charles Dickens's writing from that of Edward Bulwer-Lytton? Take the quiz and find out! I scored 92 percent, which means I got one answer wrong. I won't tell you (yet) which one, but I will say that I hesitated over it for a very long time, and of course am now kicking myself over it.
Mikhail Simkin of UCLA, who came up with the quiz, has published a paper about the results. And he discusses them at the previously linked quiz page. While I find his experiment very interesting, I disagree with some of his premises, as well as his conclusion.
We haven't had a group activity in quite some time. While there are always news items and book reviews and so forth to post, I don't want this blog to be ALL about them. I want everyone here -- or at least everyone who wants it -- to have the opportunity for a little Dickensian fun once in a while. So I've come up with an idea: the do-your-own-Dickensian-picspam!
(Which is an awkward name, but at least it's descriptive!)
You choose a character, a relationship, a novel, a scene, or a theme from Dickens, and put together all your favorite pictures representing whatever you've chosen. You can even do a picspam of the author himself. The pictures can be photos, illustrations, your own drawings or paintings or LOLcats, or anything else along those lines. Send them all to me at gdalfonzo AT verizon DOT net (take out the spaces and use the appropriate symbols), along with any instructions as to size, order, etc., and I'll post your picspam here for you.
You can do more than one picspam if you'd like. And you can do something that someone else has already done. I'm going to do a Sydney Carton picspam -- I know, shocker! -- but there's no reason someone else can't cover him too.
Any questions? Let me know in the comment section below. And have fun!